Hosting the Presence of the Lord

My latest adventure with God has been a “move in place” where I’m literally taking inventory of everything in my household to determine what stays and what goes. There’s really no pressure, except whatever pressure I place on myself, so I’ve decided not to feel rushed about the process.

The first week, I set up my bedroom in a smaller space and decided to use the larger bedroom space for business and storage. Previously, I’ve done all of my research, writing, and other business activities from the same small room as my living space, library, and dining space. It was really starting to feel closed in.

A few days ago, I moved all of my business files, supplies, and computer desk upstairs. Yes, I find myself going up and down the steps way more often throughout the day, but I’ll just count that as bonus exercise. The upstairs office space requires more time to sort, but I was able to box up about a hundred books from my library and they’re ready to go to a new home.

I’ve moved my dining table to a new corner to make room for a real chair + ottoman (coming soon). In the meantime, I now have this really nice open floor space.

A friend stopped by last night and Holy Spirit showed up in worship, praise, and prayer. It was incredibly sweet. This morning the worship continued with Crowder’s “American Prodigal” and “I Know a Ghost” CDs. David Crowder’s music is exceptionally anointed and powerful, though it’s not for everyone.
It’s been too long since I felt comfortable to turn the music up loud and dance or wave worship flags, but that’s exactly how I spent my morning, and then… just a little while ago, I stepped outside and walked across the parking lot. It’s cold and damp out, so the overwhelming scent of roses was totally unexpected! Truly, it felt like I had stepped into a summer garden… one of those immaculate English rose gardens that surround a castle! The whole outdoors smells like roses!

It’s the Lord.

I’ve encountered the Rose of Sharon in my home or in church service a few times, but this was my first time encountering God in this way outdoors. This is the atmosphere of Heaven that I enjoyed hosting at my home in Shiloh. To dwell in this environment again feels like being reunited with a loved one who’s been apart far too long. “Doing” with God is not the same as “being” with God, even though technically, doing and being can happen simultaneously. “Doers” sometimes have a hard time transitioning to resting. I’ve been a “doer” the past few years, so part of my transition to rest includes this process of taking inventory.

We’re all learning to hear and listen to the voice of the Lord, and then follow His leading. For me, these past couple of weeks, that’s involved moving some things around, and boxing up things I no longer need.

I’m preparing to host the Lord’s abiding presence… free of all distraction… to enter this appointed time of rest and recovery. This will be my “work” for 2024, and I’m very much looking forward to more days like today.

How about you? How do you host the presence of the Lord, or what steps are you taking to host more of His presence? Or in what unexpected ways has God shown up in your times of praise and worship?

PS You can learn more about hearing the voice of God and hosting His presence in “The Awakening Christian Series.”